There was a tentative evening ride on the cards, but a plague of bats* put paid to that. So as it was too late in the afternoon to pick up the keys to get into a site to look at pipes I slung a leg over the bike instead.
Ascent, sweat, grimace, all the usual shite etc etc I remembered that there was supposed to be lightning when I was at 200m or so as the wind whipped around me and had me out of the saddle and onto my feet. I was in t-shirt and windshirt and when the ice cold rain suddenly beat down on me and I thought, maybe I should turn around here, but it blew itself out and a sunny, showery, windy theme resumed without lightning. On I went. The wind dried the windshirt out pretty quick, waterproofs, pah.
See that above? I love that view, it must have been on here a dozen times or more, it’s the pines at the edge of the Black Wood high above Dumbarton.
There’s something about it, the lie of the land, they way the trees pour into the glen and out of sight, the way the burn cuts through the layers of volcanic deposits putting them all on show, in some places the water runs over huge slabs, at other times it’s washing away the softer layers like they’re coal dust. The burn makes for a nice walk too, right down to the gardens and high bridge at Overtoun.
Below is a secret not far from my usual route, it’s an air raid shelter from WW2. It’s pretty much intact, although currently flooded to about three feet, I’ve been through it, from one door to the other and it’s a bit strange for me as my Grandad was here at some point during the war when the RAF trucks stopped here with aircraft components. I often wonder if he sat in there with a dog-eared deck of cards and a woodbine.
Above is another shelter where the farmer has smashed the entrances so they’re harder to get into. This one is easier to find so I suppose I understand wanting to keep neds out, but I’m sure that little gap there just makes it all the more enticing to kids who will want to and I’d say succeed in squeezing through, to be greeted by the manky horrors below courtesy of a dangled camera.
Hmm, wonder if I could squeeze in…